Tag Archives: Margaret Cho

More ‘Diva’ Time for Margaret Cho

Margaret Cho Lifetime photo

Fans of Margaret Cho will like this.  The “Drop Dead Diva” costar tells us, “I’m in this season much more than in the last two.  It’s been a lot more work for me.”

The ever-provocative comedian is happy about that, and says the extra load hasn’t been any burden.  “I’d been touring for months beforehand so it was great to stay in one place for awhile.”  Now, with just a handful of episodes left to shoot in Season 3 — which premieres June 19 — she says she’s been flying back and forth between L.A. and Georgia, where the series shoots.  “I’m kind of getting out there and getting ready for the next leg of my tour.”

Her character, legal assistant Teri Lee, has “a couple of love interests this season,” Cho informs.  One of them is a former boyfriend of her boss, Jane Bingum (Brooke Elliott) — the plus-sized attorney into whose body plopped the spirit of a self-centered model at the outset of the quirky hit Lifetime series.  (Season 2 was released on home video last month, for those interested in catching up.)  Also coming up is a dance-centric episode in which Cho got to reunite with her “Dancing With the Stars” professional partner, Louis Van Amstel.

“I really love him,” she says.  “We got very close very quickly, which is what happens on ‘Dancing With the Stars.’  It was really fun.  I’m such a fan of his.”  As far as having to brush up on her ballroom dance moves?  “Oh, yes.  I forgot everything.  No — you don’t really forget.  That kind of intensity stays with you,” she says.

Her dance card outside the series is definitely full as well.  She has commitments all summer, and her tour takes her to the U.K. this fall.  She also has her “Cho Dependent” concert film that she recently unveiled at the Honolulu Rainbow Film Festival.  Expect that to get a cable premiere, then move to DVD.  “I’m excited because it’s a great show.  I do a lot of set comedy, I do a lot of music in there.  It was received really well in Hawaii.”

And on the TV side, Cho, who recently did an outrageous turn as North Korean dictator Kim Jong Il on “30 Rock,” says “I hope to do more of that.  That was so cool.  It was Tina Fey’s idea.  It’s really exciting to do a show you’re a fan of.”

Najimy’s Sad Goodbye; Jennie Garth Acts her Age

“King of the Hill” fans hoped Fox execs would change their minds about canceling the animated series, but star

Kathy Najimy, (Photo from Kathy Najimy offical website)

Kathy Najimy, (Photo from Kathy Najimy offical website)

Kathy Najimy, who provided the voice of Peggy Hill, says it’s definitely over.

“Isn’t that terrible?  It’s the worst thing in the world. That was the best job I ever had,” says Najimy of the cancellation.  “I wasn’t surprised because they canceled us before and then they brought us back.  This time when they canceled us, I thought they might bring us back” – but it didn’t happen.  Still, “There’s always a chance they could sell it to another network,” she adds.

The final episode airs Sept. 13.

The actress-playwright-director-activist has plenty of other things on her plate as she’s currently penning a one-woman show and has a guest starring stint on Lifetime’s hit dramedy “Drop Dead Diva” Sunday (8/23).  “Margaret Cho emailed me and said, ‘Come do my TV show in Atlanta.’  She’s a person who, when she says come, I come.  I don’t even ask what it is.  I show up, get in a costume, and do what she says because she’s so brilliant,” gushes Najimy.  “At some point after you’re 20, you start caring about the quality of your experience.  The last thing I want to do is be involved with egos or stress. There was no drama there except in the script.”

The show hit a strong chord with the actress, who has always been an advocate for women’s issues.  “This show is great for Lifetime.  I think people want to support anything that sort of levels the field of all the craziness that’s going on with women and their bodies.  Brooke [Elliot] herself is such a surprise,” she adds.  “We’re not used to somebody coming from Broadway that we don’t know in TV land, and she has such a charming, easy way about her.  The truth is, it’s terribly difficult to play a model who has died and comes back in the body of a normal-sized lawyer.  She does it with such ease that we don’t question it.  I’m a big fan of hers and from what I’ve read from the reviews, America has really responded to her as well.”

FULLY DEVELOPED: It’s a different Jennie Garth than we’ve seen before on Candace Bushnell’s Sept. 10-debuting web series, “The Broadroom.” “I play a woman executive.  That was a fun thing for me – to step into my maturity a little bit and play someone my age.”

Jennie, who’s 37, could easily get away with playing years younger, but she’s not trying to.  She points out that her and husband Peter Facinelli’s daughters are now ages 12, six and two.

The couple have been juggling parental duty with their various assignments – she also has an as-yet-undetermined number of “90210” episodes to shoot this season, while he’s busy making the third film in the “Twilight” series, “Eclipse,” and will go into “Nurse Jackie” shooting as soon as he’s finished.

They have to make their schedules work, Jennie tells us.  “We have three little people depending on us.  You know, when he’s working I take it all on, because I’m not going to leave them with someone else.  That’s our job.”

LIFE IS TWEET: A funny thing happened during intermission at one of the Jonas Brothers’ recent L.A. concerts – when suddenly there was an outbreak of audience members spontaneously flapping their hands at the Staples Center.  Turns out it was the work of “Wizards of Waverly Place” star David Henrie, who was there taking in the show (so were teen faves Aly & A.J.) and communicating with his Twitter followers.  The 20-year-old actor instructed his fans who were on hand: “If ur on Twitter scream and wave ur hands like ur on fire.”  He then shot a photo of the audience from his seat and posted it, then Tweeted, “Wave ur hands and scream if ur in this pic.”  Others could only wonder what kind of mass insanity was taking hold.

“The Biggest Loser” host and “Days of Our Lives” actress Alison Sweeney is a frequent Tweeter.  She tells us, “It’s so much fun for interacting with the fans, sharing stories, taking photos at awards, I love it.  I get to see their reactions, or watch shows together, or even just talk about Shark Week or whatever.”  Naturally, her soap followers are a strong presence.  “Obviously there are fan groups who have different kinds of conflicting opinions about the show and my character’s love life.  It’s great to get that kind of feedback.”

With reports by Emily-Fortune Feimster

Margaret Cho happy to be ‘a wild child again’ on Atlanta club scene

margaret_cho

Margaret Cho

Funny lady Margaret Cho tells us she’s found a new social life in between shooting scenes of her July 12-debuting “Drop Dead Diva” series.

“We’re about a third of the way through the first season, shooting in Peachtree, Ga. It’s fine. It’s a very small town. I go to Atlanta, which is about 45 minutes away, a lot. I actually fit in very well there. I’m getting to be a wild child again, getting to go out to the clubs. I’m hanging out with a lot of Atlanta musicians and doing sort of the rock thing,” says Cho, who is getting ready to record a music album of her own. Make that a funny music album. A funny music album with song titles unfit for repetition in a family-friendly column.

In Lifetime’s “Drop Dead Diva,” Cho plays the wise friend and colleague of Brooke Elliott‘s character. It’s about a shallow model who dies, then finds her spirit inhabiting the plus-sized body of a crusading attorney. (Oh, another one of those.) She tells us she and her husband, performance artist Al Ridenour, “are hanging out when we can” — but as far as collaborating anytime soon, “We’re not even, like, living in the same state.”

MEANWHILE: Cho, who for years has been an activist on behalf of equal rights regardless of sexual orientation and of same-sex marriage, found herself inundated with calls this week after the announcement of California Supreme Court’s ruling upholding Prop. 8. She feels it’s a temporary setback.

Cho has been remarkably open about her life — her bisexuality, as well as her past problems with drugs and with being overweight. Has she ever been sorry for baring herself in such a way?

“I’ve found that it’s been very gratifying to talk about personal issues,” she replies. “My talking about weight issues and body image, for example I felt could help women — help people — talk about their own body issues. I feel like that’s been a good contribution. Talking about my personal issues in my work doesn’t feel invasive.”

THE VIDEOLAND TWO: AMC’s Emmy-winning “Breaking Bad” has its season finale Sunday (5/31), and the show’s Aaron Paul — meth seller Jesse to “Breaking Bad” fans — is turning his attention to his other hit series, “Big Love,” which gets back into production June 4, for Season 4.

“I love that my character in ‘Big Love’ is completely opposite from ‘Breaking Bad’ — it’s like zipping on different skins,” says the actor, who plays Scott, the fiancé of Amanda Seyfried‘s character, in the HBO series set in a community of rogue Mormon polygamists. It’s especially gratifying to Paul since his “Breaking Bad” character has led to interest in his playing other drug-related roles — and “I don’t want to be the type of actor who does the same character with different names,” he makes clear.

Paul’s been doing “a little bit of traveling” and getting in some relaxation between “Breaking Bad” and “Big Love” this year. “It’s worked out for me. It didn’t overlap like it did last season, when I had to fly back and forth.”

A GOOD TURN: Jamie Lee Curtis, who was honored with the 2009 Entertainment Industry’s Courage to Care Award at the recent Noche de Ninos Gala, just learned that more than $1.8 million was raised at the star-studded evening benefiting Children’s Hospital Los Angeles. Jamie Lee’s friend and former co-star California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger presented her with the award. She rewarded him with a big kiss on the lips, which delighted the crowd of close to 1,000 in the ballroom of the Beverly Hilton Hotel.

Jamie Lee has been a tireless activist when it comes to the kids. She even wore a bright pink wig that night in honor of a 14-year-old cancer patient she had met while touring Children’s Hospital in Pittsburg several years ago. After the young girl died, Jamie Lee asked her mother if she could have the wig to remember her courageous spirit.

The celebrity-filled room included host Mary Hart, Annette Bening and Warren Beatty, Ed Begley Jr., Noah Wyle, Kevin Sorbo, Jewel, Monique Coleman, Garcelle Beauvais-Nilon and Jennifer Lopez and her husband Marc Anthony. Jennifer received the same honor by the hospital in 2004.

THE INDUSTRY EYE: “True Blood” will soon be adding fresh blood — the character of Sookie’s (Anna Paquin) cousin Hadley, described as a “fresh-faced twentysomething country girl,” who’ll wind up, according to casting sources, “seduced into a whole other world …” and “locked in a steamy kiss with vampire queen Evan Rachel Wood.”

Casting notices have gone out for outgoing, strong, socially active and community-involved housewives, who love to live the good life in Beverly Hills for — can you guess? — Bravo’s next “Real Housewives” series. “They’re coming?” responded one such local lady on hearing the news. “How they lived without us for so long, we don’t know.”

— With reports by Emily Fortune Feimster